The Importance of Color in Graphic Design

Of the seven components listed in The Elements of Graphic Design, color must be one of the most important

When getting into the nitty gritty of graphic design, you must understand all the components. Being able to master them will allow you to produce exceptional results. One of the most important components would have to be color. In any case, color is the first thing you see and is the first thing that pops out to the viewer. “Good color is a raw material to be used strategically for a clear purpose.” The use of color is as important in communicating hierarchy as typeface, type weight and size. Color does many things such as aids in organization, gives emphasis, and provides direction.

Aids Organization

In aiding organization, color establishes character through consistency. It is important to limit your color use, use the colors consistently, and plan the use from the start.

Gives Emphasis

To give emphasis, you should rank elements in order of importance. Normally, darker type is seen first, and color helps to highlight elements of importance.

Provides Direction

Using color to provide direction, you must look at the perceptual attributes which include hue, value, and saturation. “While hue categorizes information and makes it recognizable, value makes it stand out against the background, and saturation gives it brilliance or dullness.”

Color is arguably the most important component in graphic design to marketing communication. This is because of its ranking in the hierarchy of communication. Because it is the lowest level, it can function in the viewer’s subconscious. This is extremely important because it is used in all readers to respond to usefulness of information. If you want your viewer to pay attention to something more than other things, you make the wording a different color, or you make something in the image a different color or brighter, and that will draw their attention there as well. Any way you look at it, color allows readers to analyze and define what is useful, making it one of the most important components to master in marketing.

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